Cercle went into the break with a 0-1 lead, but saw Oostende draw level in the second half with a penalty. The home team went looking for a winner, but a young Cercle side did not fold and took the win in injury time. Dino Hotic gave Cercle an important victory with a great goal, their first victory in Oostende since 2004.
In Oostende, Cercle had to do without goalkeeper Majecki, who missed out with a knock. Warleson took his place in net. Charles Vanhoutte immediately returned to the defence after a suspension, and Da Silva Lopes was moved to the bench as a result. Yann Gboho also took a place on the sidelines, with Kévin Denkey leading the line.
Denkey hit the side netting after just a few minutes, following a deflection from Ueda, but that promising start was not followed up. The game mainly took place in midfield, with many duels. When Cercle let the ball do the work for the first time, it immediately resulted in a lead. The build-up play came from Francis and Siquet as Ueda reacted sharpest to the latter's through ball. Face to face with Phillips, our World Cup participant remained calm, turned the home goalkeeper and put the ball into an empty goal (24', 0-1). Following that, Cercle easily held off the home team and was able to play on the counter a few times via Denkey and Ueda. Warleson only had to dive once, on a shot from Amade.
Cercle also started the second half strongly and was close to making it 0-2, but Boris Popovic's goal was ruled out for offside. With a few substitutions, Dominik Thalhammer brought some more life to the home team, but the equalizer came completely out of the blue. After an intervention by VAR, Oostende received a penalty, which was converted by Ambrose (65', 1-1) off of Warleson's fingertips. That unexpected equalizer gave hope to Oostende again and because Cercle was no longer able to play their brand of football, it became a bit of a tough match, especially when KVO also seemed to get a second penalty for an alleged foul by Ravych, but after viewing the images, referee Visser happily reversed his decision.
The game could now go either way, even if the level of football did not remain high. Atanga forced his shot and that cost the home team dearly. At the start of injury time, Olivier Deman unleashed a perfect ball and the unmarked Hotic left Phillips with no chance (91', 1-2). Especially thanks to many interventions from VAR, another nine minutes of injury time were added, but it was Cercle that went looking to make it 1-3. Dino Hotic came closest to sealing the result with a free kick, but the post intervened. Warleson was no longer threatened and Cercle took three very important points, which were celebrated exuberantly with a full away section!
KV Oostende: Phillips, Tanghe, Rodin, Capon, Sakamoto, Amade Rocha Santos (Dwomoh 58', Urhoghide 88’), Ndicka, Batzner (58' Atanga), Durdov and Ambrose
Cercle: Warleson, Popovic, Ravych, Daland, Siquet (Gboho 82'), Abu, Vanhoutte, Deman, Somers, Ueda and Denkey (Hotic 88').